Students showcase their innovation at Eureka STEM workshop

Bangalore, December 29, 2016: Eureka, a hands-on science education provider, launched India’s first ever STEM club for kids. The first of its workshops was conducted at the Parikrma Centre for Learning, Bangalore. The Theme for the workshop was centered around “Pollution in the Neighbourhood”. The initiative by Eureka and DiscoverED, the STEM programs under Fitkids Education and Training saw over 1500 entrees from across 35 schools registering for the competition, out of whom, 50 children representing 19 schools across India were selected.

Students who were part of the workshop worked on a real time project which aimed to measure pollution in their neighbourhood. The project which went on for a month culminated with a 3 day workshop from 27-29 Dec, 2016 with the students presenting their ideas. The best of the lot from both workshops get to be part of the Eureka STEM Class of 2017These selected young scientists will be groomed over the next 3 years by the core team to help them excel at international science fairs like Google Science Fair (GSF) and Intel Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). 

The event in Bangalore was inaugurated by Mr. RamG Vallath, a former COO of Airtel and a motivational speaker and bestselling author of children's books and Ms. Shukla Bose, Founder and CEO of Parikrma Foundation.

 Ms Shukla Bose, Founder and CEO of Parikrma Foundation, said “What Eureka STEM Club is set out to do is really necessary for schools in India. Parikrma will do all that it can to support this great initiative.” 

As a part of the workshop, students have developed innovative apparatus to take the first step in combating pollution. Vishnu and Pranav, worried by the pollution overtaking the lakes, went on to a journey of identifying how organic wastes are broken down by bacteria in water, making water bodies acidic. In response, they plan on releasing a test strip to measure water pollution at a just 15 rupees. This can protect people and aquatic life from the ill effects of polluted water. 

Sai Rahul and Girish, who come from aprimarily agricultural society of North Karnataka, know that their water bodiesare suspected to be full of phosphates and other chemicals from thefertilizers. As commercial phosphate detectors cost north of INR 6,000, theyplan to make a device that does the same job for just 500 rupees. 

Mr. Rajat T, CEO, DiscoverED, said “Fitkidsis deeply focused on science learning and aims to bring out the best in thestudents. We are thrilled to see the enthusiasm of the children who havepresented their research and innovative thoughts during the workshop.Motivation, resources and mentorship are very important for students in Indiatoday so that they can truly focus on STEM learning”. 

Brief synopsis of few of theinnovative projects submitted 

Sai Rahul Chowdary and Girish fromDaffodils Concept School, Sindhanur

Sai Rahul Chowdhary and Girish come from aremote village in Sindhanur. They realized that the increase in use offertilizers and chemicals in their agricultural lands were causing a decreasein the aquatic life and depletion of water bodies. Hence they have come up witha cost effective Colorimeter which can detect the presence of Nitrates andPhosphates in water which are major cause of water pollution. 

Varun Srinivas from Delhi PublicSchool, Bangalore

Varun suffers from Upper Respiratory TractInfection (URTI). While researching on the disease he found that the problem iscaused due to air pollution from gases like SO2 and NO2. Hence he decided todetect the pollutants present in the air around his Neighbourhood. He hasdeveloped a device which can detect carbon monoxide present in air. 

VishnuVardhan and Pranav from Delhi Public School, Bangalore

Vishnu and Pranav chose to quantify organicsewage pollutants because it is the most common type of water pollution inIndia. They found that increase in presence of anaerobic bacteria indicates thepresence of organic compounds in water. Through various chemical reactions andprocedures, they plan to device tests that will be able to detect harmful acidswhich are formed by anaerobic bacteria. 

David and Vishnu from Global PublicSchool, Kochi

David and Vishnu started their research byobserving a bad smell, which was coming from a nearby waste processing plant.They wanted to find out main components of the gases coming out of theprocessing plant. On further research they understood that Hydrogen Sulfidepresent in the gases can be harmful, even in low quantities. They have come upwith a devise which consist of a gas sensor to detect the presence of HydrogenSulfide gas in the surrounding.

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